It’s not exactly news that Monsanto—the major U.S. biotech and chemical company—is a source of controversy. Its genetically modified seeds and herbicide Roundup are linked to serious health and environmental issues. Yet the company still positions itself as a source of sustainability with a commitment to making the world a better place.
That’s nice in theory, but when genetically modified seeds are linked to crop yield drag, pest and weed resistance, ‘sustainable’ doesn’t seem like the very best use of the English language. Just have a look at these recent egregious Tweets from Monsanto. You might have a good laugh, you might get outraged, but hopefully they’ll motivate you to take action, support organic, and if you live in Oregon or Colorado, vote in November to bring mandatory GMO labeling to your state.
1. Cleaning up drinking water is nice—and also just a bit hypocritical. Monsanto was caught poisoning the water in Anniston, Alabama for decades. And glyphosate--the main ingredient in its Roundup herbicide--has been found leaching into groundwater even though the company says it shouldn't.
2. This is a little bit like comparing Cheetos to actual toes. Monsanto’s ‘farming today’ is the processed, nutritionally void Cheeto to farming’s rich and respectful ancestral foot in the dirt.
3. Well, discuss all you want. But maybe replace “safety & benefits” with “poison & destruction.”
4. Another flagrant bit of not-quite-the-whole-truth. These aren’t soybeans. These are genetically modified patented crops that make Monsanto a lot of money and a lot of people, animals and environments incredibly unhealthy. That’s a reign all right…but “supreme”? How about in the more than 60 countries where GMOs are banned because of their unknown health and environmental risks?
5. Come on now. Even the U.S. government is banning GMOs and some pesticides from Wildlife Refuge areas because of the undeniable impact these crops and chemicals have on pollinators. This stat about ND bee colonies may be factually correct, but Tweeting it is a little bit like Coca-Cola telling consumers they should drink more soda because there’s healthy, hydrating filtered water in it.
6. Okay, this Tweet is just so wrong on so many levels…first, is Monsanto trying to be pro-woman with its Women's Network support when GMOs and herbicides have been linked with fertility and fetal development issues? Um. Yeah. Second, zoos royally suck. Just like the massive factory farms using GMO corn and soy to feed those poor animals, zoos are also reliant on cages, unnatural environments and diets. Third, biotech corporations are greedily gobbling up parts of the African continent--native homeland to many primates--with its biotech crops and chemicals, despite resistance from many African countries. If Monsanto really wants to support women—and primates—it will stop creating toxic seeds and chemicals. (We’re okay with the hammocks, though. Can't get enough of those.)
7. Duh! This is like that one time when McDonald’s posted some health info on its website saying that eating fast food was bad. Say what? Monocropped genetically modified seeds and the chemicals they rely on destroy healthy microbial balances in the soil. So...if they're partners...then why the all the poison? Did you mean "frenemies?"
8. Well isn’t that special. So, does that mean UMass can no longer conduct unbiased research?
9. YOU SAY THAT LIKE IT’S A GOOD THING.
10. Please don’t imply that “innovation” means “good.” Just because you can do something novel, doesn’t mean you should.
11. WTF? Seriously? Going after mommies with GMOs? That reminds me. Guns are really fun toys for kids to play with, especially when no adults are around.
12. If by “taking a stand” Monsanto means “admitting a lot of it is our fault”, then we’re all for it.
13. Like, together? There’s a reason organic certification means a 100 percent exclusion of genetically modified organisms. Organic foods are trying to fix a broken food system. GMOs are ripping off the cast before it heals.
Find Jill on Twitter @jillettinger
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top image: paultob